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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what steps he is taking to help former military service personnel find civilian employment.
Prior to discharge, individual employment needs are identified from a mandatory interview with a trained service resettlement adviser who is able to signpost a number of organisations and services ranging from the ‘Flexible New Deal’ programme available at Jobcentre Plus to workshops and training delivered through the Career Transition Partnership. For those who have left, lifetime job finding support is available through the Officers' Association or the Regular Forces Employment Association. There are also various regimental associations, for example RAJA (Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineer (REME) Association Job Agency) that provide further help for former soldiers of certain regiments.
In addition, the Ministry of Defence (MOD) has been working closely with the Department for Work and Pensions and armed forces champions have been appointed that aim to ensure Jobcentre Plus staff are providing the correct advice and support, not only to families of our armed forces but also to former service personnel. We shall also be conducting an early service leaver trial later this year (for those who leave with less than four years' service) which aims to improve the resettlement provision for this cohort.